Last weekend was an annual rite of passage for my family – we ventured to visit the Oracle of Omaha at the Berkshire Hathaway Annual Shareholders Meeting. The weekend, in short, according to Mike:
Step 1: Drive to Omaha
Step 2: Eat at P.F. Chang’s
Step 3: Go to Sleep
Step 4: Drive Home
Mike left out a few key details, so I’ll fill you in. There’s something for everyone at this rodeo, even if you don’t want to sit in an auditorium for the day and listen to two of the smartest guys alive impart their wisdom. Discounts abound at establishments like Borsheim’s and Nebraska Furniture Mart, where you can walk away with some sweet deals. There are dollar Dilly Bars. There is See’s Candy. There are Justin cowboy boots, the Geico Gecko, and the Fruit dudes from Fruit of the Loom.
My souvenir – the t-shirt and boxers, of course!
The highlight of the weekend is the meeting itself. It starts when we line up outside the CenturyLink Center at 6:00 AM in the cold and rain because according to my dad, it is critical that we get good seats. They open the floodgates and we walkrun to stake out our spot. My favorite part is the video, which this year included a cartoon of Charlie and Warren getting down to Gangnam Style and an assortment of great ads from the subsidiary companies.
I learn the most from the open Q&A session. My biggest takeaways are twofold.
- Keep it simple. Warren and Charlie invest in things they understand – candy, furniture, insurance, ice cream, shoes. And, they answer even the most complex of financial questions carefully crafted to stump them briefly, simply, and in plain English that even my non-MBA self could (usually) understand. There’s no need to overcomplicate things.
- Love what you do. Warren read every book on investing in the Omaha library by the time he was 11. He does what he does not for the money, but because he loves it. If you enjoy what you do, there’s a heck of a lot better chance that you’ll succeed.
I failed miserably at taking photos this time, so check out some great ones from my friend Kat here.
Until we eat again,
Two Happy Cooks